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McLaren explain timeline of Seidl Stella swap

McLaren explain timeline of Seidl Stella swap

McLaren explain timeline of Seidl Stella swap

McLaren explain timeline of Seidl Stella swap

McLaren CEO Zak Brown has revealed how Andreas Seidl's departure as team principal was accelerated after being informed of the German's desire to leave at the end of his contract.

Seidl has essentially rejoined the Volkswagen Group after a successful stint with Porsche in the World Endurance Championship by taking over the CEO position at Sauber, the team which will house the Audi works entry from 2026.

That switch was in reaction to Fred Vasseur moving to become Ferrari team principal, which set the F1 bosses market alight.

McLaren has replaced Seidl from within, with former racing director Andrea Stella stepping into the role.

Detailing the timeline of events that led to the reshuffle, Brown said: "Andreas, who did an excellent job here at McLaren for the last handful of seasons, in a very transparent manner informed me during the season that he was going to go elsewhere when his contract was up at the end of 2025.

"[It was] Probably pretty clear where that destination would be, which was quite understandable given his background.

"So at that time, we intended to continue for the foreseeable future because the relationship is very healthy and his work discipline is very strong.

"What we were going to do, at that point, is at the end of the season, let the world know that change would come at the end of the '25 season and after, the first person I would call to see if they would lead McLaren was Andrea, but not at that point being sure if that would be something he would consider."

On how Sauber's situation accelerated the change, Brown added: "In the fast pace of the Formula 1 environment, when it became clear that Fred was going to go to Ferrari, Finn Rausing [Sauber chairman], who is someone I have known for a decade and get along with very well, gave me a call to see if there was a discussion to be had to potentially release Andreas early.

"My reaction was if Andrea would be happy to join as team principal then I would be happy to change now, which I think puts everyone in their permanent homes for the foreseeable future.

"After some good conversations, Andrea kindly accepted the role, which then put us in a very comfortable position to move forward because Andrea was always our number one choice to lead the team.

"That all came together quite rapidly and here we are with Andrea now as our team principal, which myself, our drivers and team are extremely excited about."

McLaren seek "elements of continuation" in handover

As part of the senior leadership group at McLaren, Stella has assisted Seidl in creating a platform for future success to turn around fortunes that dipped into bleakness during the mid-2010s.

Asked how things would change under his watch, Stella insisted: "There are clearly elements of continuation.

"I think we worked well with Andreas, we established some very important directions and we do want to consolidate them.

"At the same time, the complexity of F1 leaves the business open for opportunities.

"It is day one in the job for me but this is what I am thinking about intensively and what I will be thinking about together with my leaders to find further opportunities to go even faster towards achieving our mission."


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